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Old 10-19-2002, 06:31 PM   #15
Peter Goldsbury
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Dojo: Hiroshima Kokusai Dojo
Location: Hiroshima, Japan
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Giancarlo DiPierro (G DiPierro) wrote: "For some reason, the characters in your post show up as jibberish, but the translation I found for ouyou (ou = apply, you = utilize) was "application, put to practical use." Are saying that this is the usage in general Japanese but not in Aikido?"

PAG. In many cases it does indeed mean 'put to practical use', but the term has a slightly wider meaning. In the Kojien monolingual Japanese dictionary,, the meaning is given as 原理や'm識を実際"Iな--柄にあてはめて利用すること。I am sorry that your computer cannot depict the kanji. The above sentence reads, "Genri ya chishiki wo jissaitekina kotogara ni atehamete riyou suru koto." and means, "To use a principle or knowledge by applying it to real, i.e., practical, circumstances". In the statement, 上に述べたこと'jにも女にも応用できる, Ue ni nobetakoto wa otoko nimo onna nimo ouyou dekiru. "What I said above applies to men as well as to women", the 'ouyou' here is not quite the same as a practical application of a principle or knowledge.

Why is this not nit-picking, as someone has suggested? Because of the central role which Japanese plays in aikido. The distinction is Japanese in words and concept and so it makes good sense to look at how the distinction is actually used in everyday Japanese. In aikido the distinction is actually quite artificial and tends to be made differently by different teachers. And the distinction can be more trouble than it is worth. It is usually presented as one between 'kihon waza' (basic techniques) and 'ouyou waza' (applied techniques), but both types of waza are "practical applications of principles or knowledge": either way, you put your uke on the ground or throw him/her.

To take a concrete example, the technique 1-kyou usually ends with uke on the mat in an elbow pin. As taught from shoumen-uchi, this would be classed as 'kihon waza'. But a recognised variation is (1) to throw uke after the initial unbalancing, with the elbow as the pivot and an atemi to the face. There is no name for this technique, by the way. Another recognised technique from 1-kyou is (2) to move under uke's arm, turn and throw, as in shihonage.

Now which is 'ouyou' waza and which is 'henka' waza? Some would say that Example (2) is a henka waza because it is a clear move from 1-kyou to shiho-nage. But what about example (1)? Others would say that it is LIKE a technique which some teachers, though not all, call udekiminage. If so, for these teachers it would be henka-waza, as in Example (2). But, as I said, there is no established name for the technique. On the other hand, it would certainly qualify as an application (ouyou) of 1-kyou. But my point is that the two examples are also applications of 1-kyou.

So for what it is worth, the distinction is threefold: (1) 'kihon' waza (basic techniques) which can become (2) 'ouyou' waza, when applied in different circumstances. If these different circumstances turn out to allow a different technique, the technique becomes (3) 'henka' waza.

Actually, what I did in this post would be a clear case of 'ouyou' in Japanese: taking a specific item of knowledge about Japanese and applying it ('ouyou suru') to the specific case of aikido.

Best regards,

Last edited by Peter Goldsbury : 10-20-2002 at 10:00 AM.

P A Goldsbury
Hiroshima, Japan
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